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New Navy destroyer departs Ingalls, headed for commissioning in SC

PCU Frank E. Petersen Jr. (DDG 121). (U.S. Navy/Released)

Guided missile destroyer Frank E. Petersen Jr. (DDG 121) sailed away from its berth at Ingalls Shipbuilding recently, headed for Charleston, S.C., where it will be commissioned next month.

“Watching Frank E. Petersen Jr. sail away demonstrates what this shipyard is capable of, even in the face of a pandemic,” said Donny Dorsey, Ingalls vice president of operations and previously DDG 121 ship program manager. “The Ingalls Shipbuilding team, and all those that contribute to the mission, are the best.

“Despite challenges, the hard work of the entire shipbuilding team enable this very proud day — watching the Navy sail this ship and join the fleet to support the defense of our nation.”

DDG 121 is named in honor of the U.S. Marine Corps’ first African American aviator and general officer. After entering the Naval Aviation Cadet Program in 1950, Petersen went on to fly more than 350 combat missions during the Korean and Vietnam wars.

Frank E. Petersen Jr. is the 33rd destroyer built at the Pascagoula shipyard, with five more currently under construction: Lenah Sutcliffe Higbee (DDG 123), Jack H. Lucas (DDG 125), Ted Stevens (DDG 128), Jeremiah Denton (DDG 129) and George M. Neal (DDG 131).

“I’m very grateful for the resilient and dedicated shipbuilders on our team, each is world class,” said Ingalls president Kari Wilkinson.

Once DDG 121 is commissioned in Charleston, it will sail to its homeport at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam in Hawaii.


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